One night back in the summer of 2008, my friend Sheila and I met for dinner after one of my hard core pilates workouts (back in the day when I could go five times a week, people). I was reconciled that evening to enjoying some girl time and going home to work from my desk for the rest of the night.
When the phone rang and my friend Lucy said “We’re going to this opening of a cool speakeasy restaurant in Hollywood, and M.C. Nugget is coming… do you want to go?” initially I said I couldn’t. I was busy. I’d just eaten, I was in my workout clothes, blah blah blah.
I’d only met M.C. Nugget a few weeks ago, and seem him a few times in my life. The last time I’d seen him was with Lucy and her man when he asked me out on an official date. I laughed then because THE GUY PLANS AHEAD. Our date was almost two weeks out… set for this coming Friday night…
I was definitely interested but I still hadn’t actually spoken to him for about a week. I have self respect, yo.
But so far, every encounter with this Chicken Man had been new, fun and exciting. While we were slowly getting to know each other, I was slowly changing my relationship to men and to dating. No longer would I drop things to be with the guy. No longer would I have an excuse to call or text, email, etc. I was changing who I was. I used MEN as my model as I navigated the opposite extreme from being way too available and way too into them, to having better things to do and more important and awesome things to accomplish in my life. That became my focus. Like grim death it became my focus. BY GOD. And I took a page from the guy’s playbook and decided that two months of dating would and could no longer be considered a “thing” or relationship. Six months didn’t even mean much. I decided that I would hold out and keep things light for at least two or three years before even turning the page and considering something long term with someone. And forget about marriage. That was far from my radar. These were important life changes for someone over forty who was single again and did not necessarily want to die alone…But I was also someone who would sacrifice even that – even dying alone – if it meant I would die with the wrong person or anyone who would stifle, control, hurt or squelch me. I knew I needed to drastically change my approach. After all, the common denominator in my failed relationships of the past was – well – ME.
Yeah. I was working on some big stuff alright.
Also – have I mentioned how I can talk a big game?
Because Lucy apparently peeked into my soul when she struck with the precision of a ninja and said, “But he wants you to come. He asked if you were coming…” I am no idiot, so I implied that if he wanted me to come he could have asked me himself.
She put him on the phone.
“Hey darlin… Are you going to be able to make it?”
I folded like a cheap, pre-folded, permanently creased polyester suit.
I’d already looked at Sheila for approval and got it.
THIS WAS ON.
I raced home, turned my bedroom and walk-in closet into a war zone looking for the perfect outfit. I kept my braids, rinsed off in the shower, threw on a hat and ran out the door.
We had a great time at the opening, laughing and joking, and then … after all I’d done to get there… AFTER ALL THAT WORK it was time to go home.
It wasn’t happening if I could help it.
Are you ready to go home? I asked Nuggie nonchalantly.
No… but can you give me a ride home? IT WAS ON.
We went to Sky Bar – the rooftop bar of the Mondrian Hotel on Sunset. It was a slow Tuesday night, and we enjoyed our own queen size lounge area to ourselves.
We ordered drinks… and as the cocktail waitress was coming over with a new round, M.C. Nugget and I kissed a sweet, lingering sort of kiss. And oh, was it exceptional.
The waitress interrupted with our drinks and said, “You guys are such a cute couple. How long have you been together?” to which Nuggie, in true form replied:
“Funny you should ask…. Our first date isn’t happening until this coming Friday.”
If you can make it happen, I highly recommend you kiss before you date.